Kenya/Mali: Malian Forward Diarra Leaves Leopards Following Pay Dispute

21 November 2019

AFC Leopards striker Ismailia Diarra has dumped the cash-strapped club following a pay dispute.

Nairobi News understands the Malian forward officially severed ties with the Kenyan Premier League on mutual consent.

He is said to have asked the club to leave after failing to receive his salary for the past three months.

Leopards have fallen into a deep financial crisis following the abrupt departure of sponsors SportPesa in August and the management is yet to pay players their monthly salaries since.

"Diarra said he wants to leave and offered to give up his salary arrears in exchange. He was paid almost Sh 1 million in cash as signing on fees and so the losses more or less have evened themselves up," a source explained to Nairobi News.

Diarra arrived at Leopards, from Oman, in July, with promise. He was expected to spearhead the team's attack following his reputation as a deadly attacker for Rwanda's Rayon Sport a few seasons back.

But he only made a handful of competitive appearances at the club from failing to score a goal.

His departure leaves Harambee Stars striker John Mark Makwatta with the task of leading the attack for the team this season.

Leopards are away to Bandari in their next league assignment on Thursday.

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